Monday, October 31, 2011

Prepping for winter- Part One- Getting up wood

The first consideration when it comes to preparing for winter is heat of course.  Around this part of Washington the summer can be blistering hot and the winters frigidly cold.  In fact the temps have been into the low 20's every night for a week now.  So instead of flipping on our furnace we choose to heat with our wood stove which even when you consider that we buy our wood its still much much cheaper than the electricity and natural gas to heat our house.

Wood heat has it's special considerations though. First is keeping the chimney pipes clean.  But out here in the middle of nowhere it is obscenely expensive to get a licenced chimney sweep to come out.  We did it the first year we owned the house to have everything inspected properly, but now we clean it our selves with a chimney cleaning kit I got at a yard sale for five bucks.

Next is getting up a wood supply.  This is something we do all summer and fall.  Round here the only wood like stuff that grows is sagebrush.  But about an hour away in both directions is lots of wood.  Towards Spokane you have pine, tamarack, and other sappy woods.  Go the opposite directions and you have cottonwood, alder, and best of all orchard woods such as cherry and apple. 

Apple wood is our wood of choice.  It is THE best burner, smells wonderful, burns clean and long and hot.  But it can be hard to get and expensive.  This year we got three cords of wood for free that was maple.  And I bought another two cords of prime seasoned apple wood for cheaper than it would have cost us for the gas to go cut our own.  This should get us through a winter no problem.

Right now we are spending a little time each week splitting the big pieces and trying to get them all into one pile.

1 comment:

  1. Apple wood is a good choice for your chimney, it can keep your chimney pipe clean.


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